Every year millions of creatives around the globe wait in anticipation for what is seen as the biggest creative conference in the world – Adobe MAX. Every year it leaves people walking away speechless and this year was no exception. From moving stills to designing an animation that reacts to real-time tweets, creatives could soon have some crazy new toys to play with within the Creative Cloud.
Designing for social media can be great fun but it can also be restrictive. Far too often we get client assets that are great still images but if we want them to gain reach on social they need to be moving. At IF, we pride ourselves on catching things early and finding ways around Facebook’s forever changing algorithms. However, solutions to these problems are more often than not very time-consuming, so some of the announcements at Adobe MAX could certainly change things for the better.
Adobe’s artificial intelligence, Adobe Sensei, seems to be taking center stage. Project Moving Stills turns a still into an animation, but unlike a cinemagraph, Moving Stills creates realistic 3D-camera movements in a single click. Adobe Sensei understands how objects are arranged in a three dimensional space and uses that information to not only create a 3D-motion effect, but also to determine the best effect for that image. The software also includes a handful of tools to change the 3D movement, from moving forward into the scene to panning up and down. The software also allows for custom camera movement by selecting a start and end point.
We’ve been using Plotagraph here a lot because it’s a very simple way to create a cinemagraph from a photo, however, that only really allows you to animate an object/set of objects within the image, Moving Stills appears to take a step into the photo. Frustratingly, Adobe hasn’t unveiled when Moving Stills will actually launch, or even if it will launch as a stand-alone or as part of existing software. We’ll just have to sit patiently and wait!
Here’s another awesome little helper from the future (hopefully not too distant) that will take away a few headaches to many animators out there. Imagine if you could paint motion just like with a brush in Photoshop? Well that’s the idea behind Brush Bounty, a tool that lets you paint in effects that would otherwise take an awful long time to animate. Adobe’s Fabin Rasheed demonstrated Project Brush Bounty at Max, including brushes that could paint in the rain, hair blown by the wind, a sparkling night sky or a glowing orb.
You think that was cool? Brush Bounty can also tie those animations into locations or even tweets. Adding a hashtag to the project allows the animation to react in real time to any tweets using that hashtag. To demonstrate this, Rasheed created a superhero with a glowing orb that increased in size and intensity with each tweet of #BrushBounty.
The animation can also target the viewer’s location — like matching the weather in the animation to the location. Another sneak peek showed the tool changing the direction of the wind based on how the viewer was holding the smartphone, changing wind directions with the movement of the smartphone.
The files can be exported as videos or GIFs, along with web elements for the interactive animations. Again, it’s still a secret as to when Adobe will share this wizardry with the wider public.
PROJECT SMOOTH OPERATOR
Now this, ladies and gentlemen, is the bees knees. If you’ve been chopping up and cropping landscape videos to make them fit into vertical ones for the likes of IGTV for example, this little gem will change your life. Project Smooth Operator uses AI to automatically crop horizontal videos to vertical ones — without leaving the subject behind.
The AI analyses the video and determines the most important parts. The tool then keeps those parts in the frame using the vertical aspect ratio. If the subject moves, the crop will follow in a manner that feels similar to actual camera panning. What’s even more impressive, the demo included a video with two different subjects, a dog and its owner playing fetch. Smooth Operator panned between the two subjects, deciding where to be based on the action in the video.
So, there you have it, a quick summary of the Adobe tools we can’t wait to get our hands on. You can watch more videos from the conference on Adobe Creative Cloud’s YouTube channel. Enjoy!